Enderle on Apple iPod vs. Microsoft Zune

Apple’s iPod “while very good, are becoming very common and part of what drove the iPod into the top spot in a rapidly growing market was its exclusivity. If everyone you know has one, how exclusive is it really? Also, Apple had three known competitive disadvantages: The products wouldn’t play radio, the platform didn’t allow for sharing music nor did it support flat rate pricing, and it lacked support from both the Music industry and retailers both of which wanted someone else to work with. Microsoft had a good shot with Zune but it seems someone missed a critical meeting,” Rob Enderle writes for TG Daily.

“For two days, Zune was in the top-10 products sold through Amazon and made it as high as number 2. On day three, it dropped like a rock. The first two days showed the potential the right product could have. The third showed this was a swing and a miss,” Enderle writes. “The potential for the right product was in excess of 10 million units – and possibly substantially more. This was a similar effort to the Xbox, but unlike the team that put the Xbox together, the team running Zune didn’t understand the hardware.”

“Microsoft gets software and they are learning about services but Apple is the leading expert is hardware and the MP3 player market is clearly a hardware market now. Much like Apple didn’t understand the power of software in the 80s Microsoft doesn’t seem to grasp the importance of hardware design in the 2000s and that is very telling in this most recent battle,” Enderle writes.

Full article here.
First, Apple’s iPod “plays radio” via the $49 Apple iPod Radio Remote which allows users to listen to FM radio on their iPods and control everything with a convenient wired remote. Second, Apple iTunes’ “iMix” feature allows for sharing music, and with total iMixes now approaching 1 million in the US iTunes Store alone, it seems to be a very popular social feature; certainly more popular than “squirting” tracks that allow users 3-plays-then-self-destruct-leaving-only-an-ad-behind like Zune. Third, music subscriptions haven’t proven to be popular with consumers. People like to own their music. Fourth, all major music labels support iTunes and major retailers overwhelmingly support and recommend iPod over all the also-rans. Enderle’s conceit that “iPod lacked support from both the Music industry and retailers both of which wanted someone else to work with” is pure, unsubstantiated poppycock that’s completely refuted by the facts.

The Zune software has been panned by reviewers – perhaps even more than the Zune device itself (if that’s possible) – so, Enderle’s contention that Microsoft has only failed with respect to the Zune hardware also doesn’t pass the reality test.

There’s a lot more wrong with Enderle’s article, of course. As is usually the case, Enderle just makes up some wild ideas and writes and writes in a vain attempt to justify his goofy baseless concepts. At least he seems to have figured out that Microsoft’s Zune screams failure, even if he doesn’t fully grasp why.

Zune is a failure simply because the market does not want and has no compelling need for grotesque versions of iPod+iTunes from Microsoft.

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50 Comments

  1. Enderlie thought Zune and it’s ecosystem was a piece of shit two days ago. Now he’s hyping it as the exclusive alternative.

    That Microsoft cheque must have finally arrived.

    Don’t you just hate late payments?

  2. jackspratt, consider yourself bitten.

    Enderle gets it.

    “Apple didn’t understand the power of software in the 80s” might be hard for you Mac fanboys to hear but it’s so true. I’ll put Windows version 1 up against System 5 or even 6 any day of the week. That was one of Microsoft’s early winners with the desktop metaphor, icons, scalable fonts and simple networking for Apple to copy. I’d put Windows version 3.x up against OS X Tiger even. Apple + software? Puhleeeeeze.

    That statement is even further reinforced with that awful, confused conglomeration called iTunes. Ask anyone who’s tried to use it. What is it—version 7 now? They still can’t get it right. Zune Marketplace version 1 kicks ass right out of the gate. Microsoft knows software and they blow everyone else away in the design department. Another area where Microsoft can’t be touched are points. You don’t even need money for the content at Zune Marketplace. You only need points. Start looking under the cushions on your furniture for to points to use at Zune Marketplace. You won’t be disappointed.

    I told you the lack of FM was the Achilles heel of the iPod. I would say that for that reason alone we’re going to see a flip-flop in market share between the iPod and Zune in less than a year. Sure other manufacturers put FM in their MP3 players, but it took Microsoft to get it right. Nicely done, Redmond, and kudos to you Enderle. Keep it up.

    Welcome to the Social.

    Jerkstore gets it too. You did say “poppycock”.

  3. zune tang,
    let’s have raw hardcore sex with zunes and squirt all over each others hard throbbing cocks and then ill shit on your chest, or simply place a brown zune there and then i’ll give you a cleveland steamer (http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=cleveland+steamer). Once that’s done i’ll pull an abe lincoln all over your face (http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=abe+lincoln) harvesting the pubis from my excessively hairy scrotum. I’m currently erect just thinking about it, you know how to get ahold of me.

  4. Microsoft “gets’ software?

    Oh, I guess they just don’t “get” Operating Systems (ports still open).

    This guy’s livelyhood is going away. He must be nervous.
    That’s what happens if you play on the “dark side”.

    How’d you like to have to look at yourself in the mirror every morning, knowing you have to try to keep perpetuating this crap?

    (He can’t ACTUALLY believe it, can he?)

  5. MDN; “Zune is a failure….blah, blah, blah”.

    It´s only been out a week MDN, how can you tell it is a failure?
    Do you own a Zune?
    And what defines a failure? From the reports I read Zune has around a 9% of the market and is Nr. 2 in the MP3 player market behind Apple.
    So when is a 9% market share a failure? If so, then Apple´s computer market share fits that definition.
    You underestimate the plodding dinosaur Microsoft. Just like you called the Xbox a failure…you were wrong there, too.

  6. Love music? Go iPod + iTunes + $

    …or if you are poor and have no taste go for the ugly version, Zune + Zune Marketplace + Points (?!?)

    Like reading about tech? Go Walt Mossberg

    ..or if you’re a bit challenged and have no judgement, go Rob Enderle

    ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” />

  7. “Exclusivity”???!!! Enderle thinks that Exclusivity is what made the iPod the success it is. What a tool! When you see such a weak straw man set up at the beginning of an article, there is littel point in continuing. So I didn’t.

  8. Microsoft doesn’t get DESIGN…. period.

    Software, hardware, interfaces, you name it. Microsoft doesn’t get it!

    Microsoft was founded, is run by and for the twirps, pencil-necks and dweebs who ran the A/V equipment in Junior High School. Finally, thanks to MS, there’s a place for them to go and be accepted. Kinda brings a tear to my eye…

  9. Zune Tang… Hmmm… Tang… wasn’t “Tang” the powdered orange drink created for Skylab back in the 1970s?

    Sure do like the rants, though – quite entertaining so far – while the words are intellectually devoid of all manner of reality and logic, they do fill the coffers of absurdity and create fuel for the fire on this page – which have caught lots of folks with their collective pants down.

    I’m beginning to wonder if he’s a Slugworth in Willy Wonka’s factory… I’ll let you figure out the reference.

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